Published: Sat, May 12, 2018
Tech | By Dwayne Harmon

Israel revokes work permit of Human Rights Watch director

Israel revokes work permit of Human Rights Watch director

The strategic affairs ministry, which leads Israel's well-funded effort to combat the growing global movement in support of Palestinian rights, compiled a dossier of Shakir's activities, which it said demonstrates his support for BDS.

After being refused entry into Israel last year, after which the nation granted him a one-year work visa, Omar Shakir, an organizer with Human Rights Watch, tweeted out to his followers that the Israeli government is now deporting him over the allegations.

Iain Levine from Human Rights Watch said in a statement on Tuesday the move was an attempt to "muzzle" the non-governmental organisation.

"We stand in complete solidarity with Omar Shakir and strongly condemn Israel's decision to revoke his work permit and order him to leave the country".

Human Rights Watch applied in January 2018 to extend Shakir's work visa, which was due to expire on March 31.

HRW watch have accused Israel of muzzling criticism after it gave the group's Israel and Palestine director two weeks to leave the country, accusing him of promoting a boycott movement.

According to the publication, human rights defenders intend to appeal against the decision of the Israeli side, referring to the court. The Interior Ministry acknowledged in its May 7 letter that "no information has surfaced regarding such (boycott) activities" since Shakir joined Human Rights Watch.

On Wednesday, may 9, reports The Times of Israel, citing the Ministry of internal Affairs of Israel.

Human Rights Watch is an independent, international, nongovernmental organization that promotes respect for human rights and international law. Human Rights Watch maintains direct access to the vast majority of countries it reports on.

As part of its mandate, Human Rights Watch conducts research and advocacy that exposes and challenges violations of all actors in the region, including the Palestinian Authority and the Hamas authorities in Gaza.

A month later, he was allowed entry to Israel, the same day the Knesset passed a law banning entry to foreigners who publicly call for boycotting the Jewish state or its settlements.

"Neither closing the borders to human rights groups and activists nor other Israeli measures against organizations critical of the occupation will deter us, or them, from reporting human rights violations in areas under Israeli control", it said.

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